Green Action Centre asked SSES to complete a second waste audit for our school. We were asked to collect all the school’s compost, recycling and garbage for a 24 hour period. By weighing and recording each bag we can find out how we are doing at controlling and reducing our waste.
The students in Mrs. Poloski’s class were our Earth Ambassadors. They were asked to think about what things are we doing well and what things can we do better? The students sorted each garbage bag. They noticed some recycling and compost are being put in the garbage. We made up a slogan: ‘KNOW before you THROW’. They believe most students know where things should go they just don’t THINK. The students said that with a little bit of thinking it could go a long way. They want another sorting bin in each classroom. They decided it should be called ‘REUSE’. There were a lot of items in the garbage that could have been saved and reused as something else. They found a pair of flip-flops. One student said they could have made them into fly swatters. Wooden chops sticks were found and another student thought her peas that she planted could have climbed up the sticks.
The students also discussed REDUCING the amount of garbage. Some students said their family does not have a compost pile. Some didn’t know where to put dog waste. Many wanted to help make decisions when grocery shopping and look for less packaging.
It was a rich and authentic activity for the students. They got up close and personal with the schools’ waste management program and came out of the experience with strong opinions and great questions.